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16 minutes ago, Nick Brooke said:

I am reminded yet again of the moment Sandy Petersen realised the Yelmic upper classes of Dara Happa could contain a shining host of PG Wodehouse characters: worthless drones, terrifying manipulative aunts, cheerful chinless prelates and bizarrely obsessive minor nobility, holding a ceaseless whirl of house parties, sporting events and other social engagements while match-making, poaching servants and displaying ancestral trophies...

If you're saying that Yelm is actually Jeeves, or better yet Bertie... math checks out. :)

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People on these lists massively overstate the tension between Yelm Imperator and the Red Goddess. Pretty much every member of the Yelm Imperator subcult IS an initiate of the Red Goddess and an Illumi

Or you can also see it as what happens to every revolutionary or mystical movement. Being made up of people, it ends up being used by people. The Lunar Way, the Unity Council, the God Learner Collecti

Yelm is the Imperial Sun, the fiery source of life and death. He is taken VERY seriously by the Lunars, and his worship defines the social and cosmic order. The Red Goddess shows there are things beyo

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21 hours ago, davecake said:

The tradition idea of the conservative Yelmic aristocratic class is probably one that, like many upper classes, is somewhat of an official facade. Think of like the sanctioned hypocrisy of the Victorians, or for that matter the Romans in some periods. The Yelm cult functions are done carefully in the conservative manner, following ancient rules to the letter and with due pomp and circumstance and much social enforcement of appropriate displays of virtue and gravitas. But the very same class of people, behind closed doors or otherwise out of the public eye, or in a different context such as when far from the heartland, may be indulging in all manner of eccentricities and debaucheries, and managing the resulting scandals (especially with the deranging and liberating tendencies of Illumination) is a regular part of Yelmic social life, something your Dendara matrons concern themselves with. 

 

So basically, Yelm worship is all a sham and there's not really anyone who takes Yelm seriously, they just fake it for public consumption.  And Yelm, trapped in the compromise, can't really do anything about it.  

Which I suppose makes sense after the series of humiliations Dara Happa has endured.

 

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1 hour ago, John Biles said:

So basically, Yelm worship is all a sham and there's not really anyone who takes Yelm seriously, they just fake it for public consumption.  And Yelm, trapped in the compromise, can't really do anything about it.  

Oh no, it wouldn't be fun that way. You absolutely need the straight, pious and virtuous Yelm worshiper in that environment. A bit like the minister at the start of Yes, Minister. But then, Sir Humphrey is an administrator, too. Probably somewhat illuminated.

 

Yelmgatha (the Yelmic emperor who was allied with the Goddess while she still walked the Earth) was the epitome of Yelmic achievement. He was one of the most successful emperors in Dara Happan history.

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3 hours ago, John Biles said:

So basically, Yelm worship is all a sham and there's not really anyone who takes Yelm seriously, they just fake it for public consumption. 

Not at all. But Yelm worship is about the idealised One, even if his worshippers are still among the Many, and still flawed. That doesn’t mean their worship of the One isn’t sincere, or that they don’t strive to approach an unattainable idea - or that the effort to reconcile these with Lunar ideas isn’t sincere. 

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Yelm is the Imperial Sun, the fiery source of life and death. He is taken VERY seriously by the Lunars, and his worship defines the social and cosmic order. The Red Goddess shows there are things beyond even the Imperial Sun, which is acknowledged and accepted by the Yelm cult. 

The Lunar Empire is an empire of Sun AND Moon. It is a Solar Empire with a ruddy taint. Or a Lunar Empire with a golden halo. 

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23 hours ago, Jeff said:

Yelm is the Imperial Sun, the fiery source of life and death. He is taken VERY seriously by the Lunars, and his worship defines the social and cosmic order. The Red Goddess shows there are things beyond even the Imperial Sun, which is acknowledged and accepted by the Yelm cult. 

The Lunar Empire is an empire of Sun AND Moon. It is a Solar Empire with a ruddy taint. Or a Lunar Empire with a golden halo. 

Even with this you want some tension between the two.  Yelmites who might resent the Lunar intrusion (for such things four hundred years is nothing). Tension produces stories.

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1 minute ago, DrGoth said:

Even with this you want some tension between the two.  Yelmites who might resent the Lunar intrusion (for such things four hundred years is nothing). Tension produces stories.

People on these lists massively overstate the tension between Yelm Imperator and the Red Goddess. Pretty much every member of the Yelm Imperator subcult IS an initiate of the Red Goddess and an Illuminate, and the Red Emperor is the head of the cult. Let the implications of that sink in for a moment.

Yelm Imperator is a faction WITHIN the Lunar religion, and any tension is going to be within the Lunar religion - with entities like Great Sister or with the White Moon (which is persecuted). But the illuminated Yelm Imperator cult represents the establishment of the Lunar Empire - it defines the mainstream. 

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1 hour ago, Jeff said:

People on these lists massively overstate the tension between Yelm Imperator and the Red Goddess. Pretty much every member of the Yelm Imperator subcult IS an initiate of the Red Goddess and an Illuminate, and the Red Emperor is the head of the cult. Let the implications of that sink in for a moment.

Yelm Imperator is a faction WITHIN the Lunar religion, and any tension is going to be within the Lunar religion - with entities like Great Sister or with the White Moon (which is persecuted). But the illuminated Yelm Imperator cult represents the establishment of the Lunar Empire - it defines the mainstream. 

I can go with that. Most of the establishment would be against the white moon cultists, as I understand it.  Is the tension with Great Sister political or religious or both? (of course there may not be that much separation between political and religious)

Edited by DrGoth
added a clarification of my what I was saying
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On 6/6/2020 at 1:55 AM, John Biles said:

The Dara Happans have a long history of basically throwing Yelm down the stairs and obeying invaders or basically diluting Yelm worship down to nothing.  Like supporting creating Nysalor when you already *have a sun god*.  

 

I don't know, that makes a lot of sense to me, the way I see it. Yelm's cult is very exclusive, while Nysalor was for everyone (even if Illumination remained rare, his charity and deeds were felt by all, and even the chance of Illumination really is open for all). So, that tweak to the culture doesn't feel like much of a bump.
 

On 6/14/2020 at 10:53 AM, Jeff said:

People on these lists massively overstate the tension between Yelm Imperator and the Red Goddess. Pretty much every member of the Yelm Imperator subcult IS an initiate of the Red Goddess and an Illuminate, and the Red Emperor is the head of the cult. Let the implications of that sink in for a moment.

Yelm Imperator is a faction WITHIN the Lunar religion, and any tension is going to be within the Lunar religion - with entities like Great Sister or with the White Moon (which is persecuted). But the illuminated Yelm Imperator cult represents the establishment of the Lunar Empire - it defines the mainstream. 

I can definitely accept that as the truth, but I do have a little trouble wrapping my head around it. I do wonder what's the Red Goddess to the Yelmites? Is there a need she fulfills or a mystery that she unveils that was previously unaccessible? I guess culturally she's a little like the common folk's Illuminate like I posit Nysalor to be above, but there is something about the co-existence of the two cults that doesn't just immediately grok in perfection (which, I guess, leads many to believe there must be friction).

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I'm reading the Fortunate Succession now, and this raised a question regarding Yelm and Nysalor: isn't there something about the Sun God not being Yelm Proper before the Sunstop or something? So technically the decision to create Nysalor would have predated the Dara Happan perception, at least, that Yelm was "back". (The sun gods prior to this appear to have been called Antirius and Kargzant, which, altough we usually think of them as Lightfore deities, seem to have served as the sun disk gods post-Dawn until the Sunstop as well). 

 

I may very well have gotten this incorrectly, so I welcome corrections. 

35 minutes ago, Grievous said:

I can definitely accept that as the truth, but I do have a little trouble wrapping my head around it.

It takes some effort to internalize. 

36 minutes ago, Grievous said:

I do wonder what's the Red Goddess to the Yelmites?

I'd like to know some examples of this too.

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On 6/5/2020 at 11:55 PM, John Biles said:

The Dara Happans have a long history of basically throwing Yelm down the stairs and obeying invaders or basically diluting Yelm worship down to nothing.  Like supporting creating Nysalor when you already *have a sun god*.  

...

By now, I would expect the Yelm worshippers to be a broken shell; many of their wives deserting them for the Red Goddess' cult which actually respects them and the Emperor having destroyed many of the remaining families as traitors.  The ambitious would leave Yelm behind and pursue the lunar cult as the road of power.  To do otherwise is to be second class in the Empire.

The implicit assumption here is that if you worship one god, all other gods must be anathema. It's either Yelm OR Nysalor. Either Yelm, OR the Red Goddess, but that's just not how polytheists see the world or their gods. They believe in a religious system, not just a god. Take a look at the God's Wall, that's what Dara Happans believe. Yes Yelm is the emperor of the Universe, but all those other gods and demons exist too and without them Yelm wouldn't have a world to be Emperor of.

Dara Happans believe there are many aspects of Yelm, and that Nysalor is one of them. Why wouldn't they want to be more directly able to worship a manifest aspect of their god? Sedenya is also part of the celestial pantheon, part of the divine universe. Of course there are disagreements and schisms about how it all fits together, plenty of scope for branding each other heretics and such, but if Moonson proves he is the incarnation of Yelm that's it. It's proved and everybody better get with the program, which is very definitely not monotheism.

Edited by simonh
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38 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

I'm reading the Fortunate Succession now, and this raised a question regarding Yelm and Nysalor: isn't there something about the Sun God not being Yelm Proper before the Sunstop or something? So technically the decision to create Nysalor would have predated the Dara Happan perception, at least, that Yelm was "back". (The sun gods prior to this appear to have been called Antirius and Kargzant, which, altough we usually think of them as Lightfore deities, seem to have served as the sun disk gods post-Dawn until the Sunstop as well). 

This is a popular interpretation. The Khordavu narrative emphasizes an Antirius restoration and suggests that "preparing the way" for a god named Yelm originates with some religious imperative the Lightbringers brought with them. "-Elm" enters the dynastic lists shortly thereafter and ultimately Erzanelm lays the groundwork for the Sun Swap And Stop in 111,375.

I've never asked how exactly Khordavu coopts the Monster Army but it is clearly a pivotal event that ultimately contributes to the Break in the Council.

1 hour ago, Grievous said:

do wonder what's the Red Goddess to the Yelmites?

Yelmgatha figured it out and his revelations seed the modern Red Emperor complex. The only real question for us is which "Bright One" he equated her with. I'm thinking Osentalka, which would make her an incarnation of the Nysalor who ruled the universe in tandem with Khordavic Yelm Imperator, much as the two halves of my response here are mirrors.

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1 hour ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

I'm reading the Fortunate Succession now, and this raised a question regarding Yelm and Nysalor: isn't there something about the Sun God not being Yelm Proper before the Sunstop or something? So technically the decision to create Nysalor would have predated the Dara Happan perception, at least, that Yelm was "back". (The sun gods prior to this appear to have been called Antirius and Kargzant, which, altough we usually think of them as Lightfore deities, seem to have served as the sun disk gods post-Dawn until the Sunstop as well). 

I've attached a letter I wrote Greg Stafford back in the nineties that talks about Plentonius, Yelm, Murharzarm, Khordavu, the Six Parts, etc. back when the Glorious ReAscent of Yelm was a new thing. Hope it confuses things nicely! Apologies for the enthusiastically effusive tone, I was in my twenties and the world was a fun and exciting place back then.

Speculations on the Glorious Reascent.pdf

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47 minutes ago, Nick Brooke said:

Hope it confuses things nicely! Apologies for the enthusiastically effusive tone, I was in my twenties and the world was a fun and exciting place back then.

It was fun material to go through!  Plentonius was certainly one for "making gods", or perhaps I should say "making god (aka Yelm)".  Poor Antirius got bumped down to being a son - didn't even get to be part of the name (unless you consider his original name as Yelmalio, in which case his name got truncated - but I tended to see it the other way).  Yuthu / Yuthuppa came out well, getting the first part of the name "Y(u)-elm".  Did Plentonius bring "-elm" (Elmal, Ehilm, Elmalus) from the south?  Territory that Khordavu hoped to conquer or absorb?

Speculation is endless!

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1 hour ago, jajagappa said:

Yuthu / Yuthuppa came out well, getting the first part of the name "Y(u)-elm".  Did Plentonius bring "-elm" (Elmal, Ehilm, Elmalus) from the south?  Territory that Khordavu hoped to conquer or absorb?

I may be wrong, but the Yu- prefix means 'god', so Yu-elm means Sun God.

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1 hour ago, M Helsdon said:

I may be wrong, but the Yu- prefix means 'god', so Yu-elm means Sun God.

But we're also told that Kargzant is Lightfore, while Yu-Kargzant is Yelm/The Sun Disk, so I always assume the "Yu" had a slightly more exclusive meaning than just "god." Maybe "Lord" or "Great" or some intensifier.

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39 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

But we're also told that Kargzant is Lightfore, while Yu-Kargzant is Yelm/The Sun Disk, so I always assume the "Yu" had a slightly more exclusive meaning than just "god." Maybe "Lord" or "Great" or some intensifier.

Or Kargzant means sun, so Kargzant is sun and Yu-Kargzant is Sun God?

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7 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

I'm reading the Fortunate Succession now, and this raised a question regarding Yelm and Nysalor: isn't there something about the Sun God not being Yelm Proper before the Sunstop or something? So technically the decision to create Nysalor would have predated the Dara Happan perception, at least, that Yelm was "back". (The sun gods prior to this appear to have been called Antirius and Kargzant, which, altough we usually think of them as Lightfore deities, seem to have served as the sun disk gods post-Dawn until the Sunstop as well). 

There was an interesting thread on this topic about a year ago. Impressive starting shot if nothing else, I say.

 

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2 hours ago, M Helsdon said:

I may be wrong, but the Yu- prefix means 'god', so Yu-elm means Sun God.

It does, but it also seems to derive from the Yuthuppan mythos rather than a universal.  We've got the general prefix "Yu-".  We've got Yuthuppa, the Ship of God.  We've got Yuthubars, the City of God (or p.12, the City of Spirit).  Note as well on the map of the 10 cities on p.12, that Yuthubars appears, but not Yuthuppa (whereas both Raibanth and Alkoth exist).  

The only other Yu- reference is on p.40 in one of Plentonius' personal notes about a war with Naveria, "My grandfather marched with Captain Vertus of Nattaus, following the banner of the
Prince of Yunirtos. The emperor came from the north"

There is an embedded reference in p.9: Voshgatyuth. Literally “House of Dead Gods.” (Lodril's palace ostensibly)

One might argue that on p.21 the Yarm tree is derived from Yu-arm and means a "divine tree" 

The early presence/reference in GRoY to the Copper Tablets and the 10 planets, also strongly suggests the influence of Yuthuppa upon the naming of Yelm.

Yu is also not the only word for god or divinity.  E.g. Ezelveztay. Vulgarly, “the One,” or Literally “divinity-One-to be-entity.”

And GRoY p.6 points to Yelm meaning:  Literally “Shining Overhead,”  - now here one part is "Shining" (aka Sun), and the other is "Overhead", which ties in well with Yuthuppa/Yuthubars (e.g. overhead ship, overhead city).

So, I think there's plenty of room for debate (the Plentonius debates???) about the derivation of Yelm and where the pieces of the name came from and whether they are not in effect two words meaning the same concept that came from two languages.

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6 hours ago, Nick Brooke said:

I've attached a letter I wrote Greg Stafford back in the nineties that talks about Plentonius, Yelm, Murharzarm, Khordavu, the Six Parts, etc. back when the Glorious ReAscent of Yelm was a new thing. Hope it confuses things nicely! Apologies for the enthusiastically effusive tone, I was in my twenties and the world was a fun and exciting place back then.

Speculations on the Glorious Reascent.pdf 70.7 kB · 12 downloads

Thank you! This analysis/compilation was highly inspiring to read through, and it dug quite lot deeper than the initial question of "did Yelm only truly come into Time with the Sunstop", to the deeper complexities of the regional and folk- deities of the wider Pelorian basin, the Many Suns, and the idea that the Yelmic cult is a synthesis for religio-political purposes. It made me think of a thread that was linked here by GodLearner: 

1 hour ago, The God Learner said:

There was an interesting thread on this topic about a year ago. Impressive starting shot if nothing else, I say.

 

Indeed, I even posted in there, so it was in the back of my mind once I started reading Nick's commentary. It's really cool how people approach similar ideas with so much time and space apart. I, at least anecdotally, adds credence to the ideas, in my opinion. Plus, they're neat. 

(Now to extrapolate from a synthetic Lunar Goddess, and a synthetic Solar God to the perhaps more controversial ideas of the synthesis of Orlanth and Ernalda, the latter which has been discussed on the forum already....)

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1 hour ago, jajagappa said:

It does, but it also seems to derive from the Yuthuppan mythos rather than a universal.  We've got the general prefix "Yu-".  We've got Yuthuppa, the Ship of God.  We've got Yuthubars, the City of God (or p.12, the City of Spirit).  Note as well on the map of the 10 cities on p.12, that Yuthubars appears, but not Yuthuppa (whereas both Raibanth and Alkoth exist).  

The only other Yu- reference is on p.40 in one of Plentonius' personal notes about a war with Naveria, "My grandfather marched with Captain Vertus of Nattaus, following the banner of the
Prince of Yunirtos. The emperor came from the north"

There is an embedded reference in p.9: Voshgatyuth. Literally “House of Dead Gods.” (Lodril's palace ostensibly)

One might argue that on p.21 the Yarm tree is derived from Yu-arm and means a "divine tree" 

The early presence/reference in GRoY to the Copper Tablets and the 10 planets, also strongly suggests the influence of Yuthuppa upon the naming of Yelm.

Yu is also not the only word for god or divinity.  E.g. Ezelveztay. Vulgarly, “the One,” or Literally “divinity-One-to be-entity.”

And GRoY p.6 points to Yelm meaning:  Literally “Shining Overhead,”  - now here one part is "Shining" (aka Sun), and the other is "Overhead", which ties in well with Yuthuppa/Yuthubars (e.g. overhead ship, overhead city).

So, I think there's plenty of room for debate (the Plentonius debates???) about the derivation of Yelm and where the pieces of the name came from and whether they are not in effect two words meaning the same concept that came from two languages.

My impression: 

The "Yu"-morpheme may originally had a prosaic meaning of "Above/Over", and over time the association between this position and divinity melded in the celestially-worshipping culture, so that something overhead was metaphorically indicative of divinity.

This isn't too far off from Indo-European languages, where the Latin "deus" (god) ultimately derives from the reconstructed PIE "dyéus" (or something like it) which would most likely have meant "(the day-lit) sky". 

So Yelm is possibly archaically "Yu-Elm" (Light Ovearhead/Above). Yuthubars might've been "City (of the) Above", and so on. This might mean a couple of things: 

- If the "above/over" meaning is older, then the *name* "Yelm" might be of quite ancient provenance, regardless of whether the name's usage to denote the chief imperial ruling deity is equally ancient. 

- Contrary to my above point: distinguishing the "above" and "god" meanings are possibly dependant on context, and in fact coexist in the languages, instead of being a simple case of one understanding replacing the other (a bit like "Sri" in parts of India, which can be translated both as "Lord", "Holy", just "god", or indeed even "Husband"). 

- I'm way off base and none of this means anything and I'm just making stuff up (which is fair enough., I'm having fun doing so.)

Edited by Sir_Godspeed
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8 hours ago, simonh said:

The implicit assumption here is that if you worship one god, all other gods must be anathema. It's either Yelm OR Nysalor. Either Yelm, OR the Red Goddess, but that's just not how polytheists see the world or their gods. They believe in a religious system, not just a god. Take a look at the God's Wall, that's what Dara Happans believe. Yes Yelm is the emperor of the Universe, but all those other gods and demons exist too and without them Yelm wouldn't have a world to be Emperor of.

Dara Happans believe there are many aspects of Yelm, and that Nysalor is one of them. Why wouldn't they want to be more directly able to worship a manifest aspect of their god? Sedenya is also part of the celestial pantheon, part of the divine universe. Of course there are disagreements and schisms about how it all fits together, plenty of scope for branding each other heretics and such, but if Moonson proves he is the incarnation of Yelm that's it. It's proved and everybody better get with the program, which is very definitely not monotheism.

In Glorantha, your god expects various things of you and sends spirits to punish you if you violate those laws.  This puts limits on how many gods you can worship.  Yelm and Red Goddess worship didn't seem very compatible to me, especially since Yelm worship says women's job is to be subordinate and get kicked down the stairs.  

People's general answer seems to mostly be 'Yelm worship is just a sham now, which illumination lets you get away with'.  So be it.

 

Edited by John Biles
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2 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

- I'm way off base and none of this means anything and I'm just making stuff up (which is fair enough., I'm having fun doing so.)

Aren't we all? 😉

2 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

The "Yu"-morpheme may originally had a prosaic meaning of "Above/Over", and over time the association between this position and divinity melded in the celestially-worshipping culture, so that something overhead was metaphorically indicative of divinity.

I think that all works fine, as does the varied language connotations.  The idea that "Yelm" is an older form brought back is certainly feasible, or a variant (Yuelm, Yulm, Yulem, …).  Or maybe like in Hebrew it was written something like "YLM" but with varied vowels depending on context.  

Whatever the background, I do think "Yu-" has strong associations with the celestial-worshipping Yuthuppans who survived through the Dawn and became a core part of Khordavu's new empire.

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